Last fall, Taylor R., a senior designer for the Washington Post, and her husband, a contractor for National Geographic, packed up their bags and their cat and drove from Washington D.C. to their new home: Bloomington, Indiana. Taylor was one of 14 people we accepted to Bloomington Remote, our remote worker recruitment program.
Not gonna lie: when we started this program, we got a few raised eyebrows. We don’t offer a cash incentive, and most remote worker programs are run through municipalities. But we’ve found that remote workers are hungry for creative and human connection. Our startup and cowork community makes it easier for transplants to feel at home. (Read more here about why we launched our program.)
For Taylor and her husband, cost of living was a significant motivator. “Moving here was like getting an instant raise,” she told us.
Program participants receive three years of free coworking at The Mill, an iconic historic space. Applicants must live outside of Indiana, have full-time remote employment, and move within the calendar year.
“Bloomington Remote is bringing diverse, tech-skilled, creative people into our community,” Mayor John Hamilton says. “We look forward to welcoming this year’s cohort of new Bloomingtonians.”
Indiana is emerging as a competitive state for tech talent, and in 2021, Bloomington was named Indiana’s Rising Tech City. The city also received a $3.5-million federal grant to build a new technology center to support our burgeoning startup ecosystem.
Tech community is attractive to Bloomington Remote participants Blake R., a cybersecurity engineer, and Pablo F., founder of a data science company. Others appreciate the arts scene and outdoor life. UX writer Lauren S. knew Bloomington by its improv comedy reputation, but had never visited. Neither had software engineer and avid rock climber Ritchel C. Fashion historian and YouTube influencer Abby C. remembered Bloomington fondly from college. Native Hoosiers Luke and Andi wanted to be closer to family after years in a tiny Bay Area apartment.
The pandemic is driving remote workers to seek a fresh start and higher quality of life. Bloomington offers cultural richness without big-city hassle or costs.
It helps that we’re home to Indiana University, with its top-rated music, business, environmental policy, and informatics schools. We’re known within Indiana for our progressive culture, college basketball, outdoor recreation, and BEAD, our 60-block entertainment and arts district.
With financial support from the City of Bloomington, Bloomington Remote provides a host of benefits. Participants get relocation support through our partnership with Century 21 Scheetz, as well as concierge onboarding, networking events, banking discounts, and other benefits.
See details on eligibility and application at BloomingtonRemote.com. And please help us share the news with your remote worker friends who live outside of Indiana!